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Will Never Recover

by Siri
(Durban, South Africa)

I am 13 years old. My brother who is 8 years my senior used to sexually abuse me. I do not know exactly when it began or when it stopped but I do remember finer details like what he did and how it made me feel.

He used to make me watch pornographic material with him, give him oral sex, get oral sex from him as well as fingering me. He called it our little secret and forbade me from telling anyone. I complied with his requests as he was the only one to give me any attention which was something I craved for as a child.

I used to think it was all my fault and I used to spend sleepless nights crying and asking god to forgive me.

One day he attempted to rape me and I realized that what was happening was hurting me and that it was bad. I confronted him and told him it had to stop and looking back, I can say it was the best thing I ever did.

As a result I am suffering from depression, anxiety and on the verge of developing an eating disorder. I used to self-harm in various ways but stopped after my mum saw my scars. Luckily she didn't question them but I felt so guilty so I never did it again.

Everyone in school thinks I'm so perfect because I am top of the class, I have many talents and I'm also 'really pretty' (not my words)

I told my two best friends what was happening and they encouraged me to talk to our school counsellor. I was reluctant at first but after going for one session I realised that it was actually helping me. I know that I will never fully recover and I can accept that. I am just afraid that I won't be able to live a normal life.

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How I got over the devastating effects of child abuse and moved on with my life


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